Royal Challengers Bangalore 161-7 (Kohil 56) beat
Delhi Daredevils 160-6 (Hopes 54) by 3 wickets
Indian Premier League 2011, Delhi
The Royal Challengers Bangalore showed nerves of steel to beat the Delhi Daredevils by three wickets in an Indian Premier League 2011 match that twisted and turned throughout.
James Hopes' 54 helped the Daredevils post a competitive 160 for six but after Virat Kohli hit 56, Bangalore were in trouble at 115 for four in the 16th over before captain Daniel Vettori and Syed Mohammed rescued the innings and carried the Challengers home with three balls to spare.
They reached a not-too-big target with three balls to spare having made heavy weather of it. It took the Challengers to seven points and as high as upto second in the table, while Delhi are still ninth having lost their fourth game.
Chasing 161 runs for victory, Bangalore started in hurried fashion. That was despite the early dismissal of Tilakratne Dilshan who was out for a duck, trying to pull Ashok Dinda. Virat Kohli, playing at his home ground, made light work of Irfan Pathan, hitting the second over of the innings for four fours.
At the other end, Chris Gayle stood watching but didn’t play spectator for long as he smacked the Delhi bowlers soon enough, catching up with Kohli. They put up 82 runs in only 7.1 overs, scoring at 11.44 runs an over, and brought up the team half-century in only the fifth over.
In the eighth over though came a minor stumble which soon became a major hiccup for the batting side. Gayle was out caught in the deep off James Hopes and it sort of opened the floodgates for Delhi, allowing them to come back into the match.
And within a space of eleven balls and thirteen runs, they had gotten rid of AB de Villiers and Kohli as well. Gayle was out for 26 runs while de Villiers was run out for 5 runs off a direct throw from David Warner. Kohli did complete his half century but Bangalore seemed to be fading as Cheteswara Pujara too holed out in the deep.
Saurabh Tiwary and Daniel Vettori then hung around for a bit, stringing together 32 vital runs that brought the target that much closer. But Tiwary departed in the 17th over and exposed the tail to the bowlers. 22 runs were still needed off 20 balls at that stage but in the company of young Syed Mohammad, Vettori steered his side to a narrow three wicket win.
Earlier, Bangalore won the toss and elected to field first. It was a risky move, for Delhi were to bat first again on the same track where they busted the Kings XI Punjab attack on Saturday. With a green tinge on the wicket, it played true and there was ample bounce for the opening duo of Virender Sehwag and David Warner to make merry.
But unlike in the previous game, they failed to get going and Warner was first out, bowled by Zaheer Khan for seven runs. Sehwag though seemed in good touch still, stroking a quick 25 off 18 balls with three fours, when he was run-out against the run of play.
It wasn’t a suicidal run, just that the throw was good enough to beat him to the crease. The score read 43 for 2 in the 7th over and three overs later, Daniel Vettori bowled Mathew Wade for eight runs, making it 68 for 3. The stage was then set for James Hopes who had been sent in at number three.
Earlier in the tournament, Hopes has looked pretty confident with the bat and perhaps the Daredevils wanted to take advantage of that. And it worked as the Aussie all-rounder hit a timely half century to guide the innings. He made 54 runs off 43 balls, including seven fours, and was fifth out in the 19th over.
By that time, with the aid of Venugopal Rao’s 24 runs off 21 balls, he had made sure that Delhi crossed the 150-run mark and eventually finished with 160 for six.
© Cricket World 2011